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Animal Shelter volunteers earn President's Service Award

Left to Right, Back Row to Front - Logan Matthews, Melinda Matthews, Stephanie France, Nicole Gerbin, Paige Peters, Cecelia Lucas, Rhiannon Matthews, Carson Frank, Jaclyn Johnson, Cheryl Kelly, Taylor Schroeder, Denali Weed, Gareth Matthews, James Narsavich, Monica Pettit, Ashley Kjelland, Read Dunn, Emma Pettit, Jan Matuszewski, Emma Grasser, MSB Volunteer Coordinator, Susan Fujimoto, Autumn Kelly, Kaitlyn Sadler. Not pictured: Andrea Borsetti, Becky Anders, Cheryl Wharton, Cindy Shipley, Patrick Shipley, Danielle Alton, Dawn Isbill, Elijah Jacobsen, Joan Narsavich, Julie Johnson, Kaylee King, Kylie McCormick, Lisa Klawitter, Mikara Klawitter, Olivia Kilborn, Riley Matuszewski, Star Jennings

Left to Right, Back Row to Front - Logan Matthews, Melinda Matthews, Stephanie France, Nicole Gerbin, Paige Peters, Cecelia Lucas, Rhiannon Matthews, Carson Frank, Jaclyn Johnson, Cheryl Kelly, Taylor Schroeder, Denali Weed, Gareth Matthews, James Narsavich, Monica Pettit, Ashley Kjelland, Read Dunn, Emma Pettit, Jan Matuszewski, Emma Grasser, MSB Volunteer Coordinator, Susan Fujimoto, Autumn Kelly, Kaitlyn Sadler. Not pictured: Andrea Borsetti, Becky Anders, Cheryl Wharton, Cindy Shipley, Patrick Shipley, Danielle Alton, Dawn Isbill, Elijah Jacobsen, Joan Narsavich, Julie Johnson, Kaylee King, Kylie McCormick, Lisa Klawitter, Mikara Klawitter, Olivia Kilborn, Riley Matuszewski, Star Jennings

PHOTO: Courtesy of the Matanuska-Susitna Borough

MAT-SU—On Sat., more than 39 volunteers at the Animal Shelter for the Matanuska-Susitna Borough were honored for their dedication with the President's Volunteer Service Award. “The shelter staff and the homeless and abandoned animals we care for are so thankful for their generous efforts,” said Mat-Su Borough Volunteer Coordinator, Susan Fujimoto. “We could not do all that we do without them.”

The Mat-Su Animal Care Shelter’s volunteer program began in late 2008, spearheaded by Fujimoto, and has been growing steadily ever since. More than 200 active volunteers donate a total of more than 800 hours a month to help care for the animals, raise public awareness, and provide comfort to the animals during their stay at the Shelter.

Animal Care Manager Phil Morgan thanked the volunteers at the ceremony and is grateful for the dedication of all the volunteers. “It’s incredible, 800 hours per month of volunteer help reflects the deep commitment of our community,” Morgan said.

These awards came from hours spent volunteering at the Mat-Su Animal Shelter from July 1, 2010 to June 30, 2011.

Award levels were based on the volunteer’s age and number of hours spent volunteering. The award levels are bronze, silver, and gold and the ages range from Kids 5-14; Young Adults 15-25; Adults age 26+. To earn a bronze level, kids need 50-74 hours; Young Adults 100-174 hours; Adults 100-249 hours per year. To earn a silver level kids need 75-99 hours; Young Adults 175-249 hours; Adults 250-499 hours per year. To earn a gold level kids need 100 or more hours; Young Adults 250 or more hours; Adults 500 or more per year. The Shelter awarded 22 Bronze, 4 Silver and 12 Gold pins at their celebration.

The President’s Council on Service and Civic Participation was established in 2003 to recognize the valuable contributions volunteers are making in our communities and encourage and inspire more people to engage in volunteer service. The award recipients receive an official President’s Volunteer Service Award lapel pin, a personalized certificate of achievement and a congratulatory letter from the President of the United States.

If you are interested in volunteering at the Mat-Su Animal Shelter, please call Susan Fujimoto at 761-7515 for further information.

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